Boombox Bindery Interview on Bookbinding Team Blog

This morning, Hilke, one of my bookbinding friends across the world has posted an interview with me on the Bookbinding Team blog! It was such an honor to be asked, and I had a really nice time corresponding with her this week. She's such a neat person, I felt like I should be interviewing her! Here are a few things I know about her:

Hilke also goes by buechertiger, which translates to book tiger. She lives in Germany and has an awesome blog called Verzwirnt Und Zugeleimt: Into the Realm of Book Arts by Trial and Error. I love her blog because she does such a good job of sharing her recent work, and she manages to give a snapshot into her daily life, which is so fun! Also, her recent paste paper tutorial is excellent and very thorough, so if you've been wanting to give paste paper a try - check it out! The photo to the left is one of her papers. She has a wonderful gallery of work, and she also has an Etsy shop full of lovely books.

Many thanks, Hilke!

March Madness

It has been a busy few weeks and I have a few photos of my recent projects to share. Above is a Japanese stab portfolio that I made for Josh. He needed a portfolio that would look professional, and could be made quickly. Japanese 4-hole bindings are a good fit for that criteria. The only downside to these books is that they don't open as well as some other bindings. To compensate for that, I suggested that he use a very large gutter. As can be seen in the image above, thanks to that large gutter, all of J's artwork can be seen without forcing the book to lie flat.

Speaking of Japanese bindings, my friends, Hannah and Clint came to visit recently and were up for a little how-to lesson in the bindery!
Here they are posing with their joint creation. They did a great job from start to finish! I showed them how to use Heat'n'Bond to iron fabric onto the light weight cover boards. Then we experimented with some screen printing for the front cover using one of Josh's screens. That part was especially fun because it was my first try with the technique. I was a little bit worried about the ink sticking to the screen. We made several prints in rapid succession and then raced to the tub to wash the ink out! It all came out and the screen is ready to use again! Han and Clint took turns punching holes in the covers and the pages and then Han sewed the book together. Job well done.

I'm teaming up with fellow NBSS alum, Wendy Withrow of Windy Weather Bindery, for a production project. My dad, who is currently the president of a professional association (to be named later!), is the client. As he is nearing the end of his presidency he would like to offer a book as a token of thanks to the members of the board. Lined pages were the preference, so, instead of trying to line pages myself, I ordered pre-sewn text blocks from Hollander's. That little step ended up saving time and money.

Last week I made all of the covers for the books. The USPS got them up to Michigan in record time. Wendy will be working on stamping the names of the members as well as the association name onto the covers. When she's done, she'll send them back, I'll case them in, and then send them to Texas where an annual conference is taking place.

Spring into Handmade was the name of the arts and craft market that Cottage Industry, of Orlando, hosted this past weekend. I shared a table (photo above) with my friends, Sarah and Lisa, from Orange Blossom Ink. Visit their website here to read more about our experience at the market and here to read about a field trip they took to Cottage Industry last year.

The three of us decided that we should collaborate on an item to sell at our table and settled on boxed card sets. Orange Blossom Ink designed cards and lined envelopes with decorative paper that Lisa found at Paper Source on a recent trip to Chicago. I used the same decorative paper along with some Japanese Asahi cloth to make the boxes. We made two sets for the show. Here is a photo of the other set. Each box houses eight cards with four different prints. I imagine that we will collaborate again in the future and that a person might be able to find one or two of these sets listed in our respective Etsy shops!

Below are a number of my miniature book earrings in progress. They turned out to be my number one seller at the market. Definitely fun to make! They are all pamphlet bound, and just as much work went into each tiny book as would go into a larger pamphlet binding. It was satisfying finding just the right size papers in my collection of smaller pieces.

So now, the March madness continues! I have an interesting and complicated box project to work on today, as well as some book repairs that are nearly complete. The two books I'm repairing are eager to return to their home in Massachusetts! I've been updating my Boombox Bindery Facebook Page with photos of the new work I'm adding to Etsy. I have a few more things in the store and will continue to add to it, little by little.

Boom Box Bindery

Boom Box Bindery is underway! In January I signed up as a seller on Yesterday Josh did a bang up job on the Boom Box logo and today I posted my first item. For about three years now, I've been mulling over what the name of my bindery should be. Boom Box Bindery came to mind during some brainstorming this past September and it has had some staying power. The product focus of the store will be books, boxes and cards.

As can be seen in BBB's first posted item, Josh and I will be collaborating a bit. He did the screen printing on this book. I came up with the idea for these little books when I was thinking of a shower gift for two of our friends who are getting married next month. They will be getting the two books pictured in the middle ground of the photo below. One of them has the same cover, with the word "lists" on it, while the other has the word "ideas" printed on it. Josh and I have written down many lists and ideas in our few months of marriage, and I thought it would be nice for our friends to have official books for this purpose that are easy to keep handy because of their size.

One of the many neat features on Etsy can be found under the "Custom" tab on the navigation bar. This brings the craft shopping patron to "Alchemy," a spot where they can request custom items. The requests come in varied specificity. You'll find a post in which someone is just dying to have the very same brown sweatshirt as so-and- so in such-and-such a movie, next to a post for a general gift for grandma. I have put a few bids on projects for those people looking specifically for books or boxes. I also bid on projects that are vague, where people describe the person they are trying to find something for, and request any and all suggestions. Most of these have upwards of 20 bids on them, so I'm looking at my bid writing as an opportunity to gain some experience interacting with clients.

Now that my online selling presence is somewhat of a reality, I am increasingly excited to make new work and get selling! In addition to working on items to sell on Etsy, one of my new goals is to join Orange Blossom Ink in sharing a table at the upcoming arts and crafts show to be held at Cottage Industry. I heard that there was going to be a Sailboat consignment event going on across the street on that day and decided I'd try to work some nautical themes into one or two items. When I actually read about the event I realized it is Sale Boat rather than Sail which turns out to be upscale children's consignment... so children's themes it is!